Oh Baby – a novel (Day 3)

OH BABY! – a novel
(By: Pastor Taiwo Iredele Odubiyi)

Read and be blessed.

(Day 3)

Richard pulled his black cell phone out from his belt holder and began to search for a number. “I’ll talk to him.”

Tammy was looking at him, glad that he was there with her to handle the situation. He could handle any situation and anyone. And she was confident he would tackle this man and his mother. His confidence was one of the things she liked about him. He was also well polished and fun to be with, aside being a good Christian and husband.

When Ngozi perceived that Richard was ready to tackle her husband on the matter, she quickly said, “If that’s my husband you’re trying to call, please don’t let him know that I told you what his mother said. Just ask him why you have not been seeing us.”

Richard nodded as he dialled. When the call was picked, he told Ngozi’s husband to see him soon.

“He’s coming to see me next Saturday.” Richard informed Ngozi after hanging up. “I want you to come with him so we can discuss this issue together.”

“Yes, Pastor Richard.” Ngozi said and stood. “What can I offer you?”

Tammy instantly shook her head, without bothering to smile. Why pretend that she was not hurt by what Ngozi had told them? Her heart was heavy.

Richard smiled a little. “No, thanks, don’t bother. We are leaving now. Do you mind if we pray?” He asked, reaching out his hand.

Ngozi took his hand and they all bowed their heads.

After praying with her, Richard and Tammy left.

They soon reached their car, entered and hooked the grey seat belts.

Richard started the car and drove out of the place, on their way to the house of another family without saying anything to his wife. He knew that Tammy was upset by the things she heard at Ngozi’s place. He was upset too. Who would not be? He didn’t bother to look at Tammy. She was probably crying as she usually did when someone brought up the issue of their childlessness. He drove on silently, both of them busy with their thoughts, handling their emotional pains.

Why has Tammy not conceived a child? Oh God, are we missing it somewhere? Richard silently asked God as he had been doing since they began going for medical tests and treatments, and seeing fertility experts. It was Tammy who first expressed concern and went to see their family doctor when she found she was not pregnant six months after wedding. The doctor had told her she should not worry, and that there was no cause for alarm until if twelve months of regular sexual relations with her husband failed to result in conception. She relaxed a little, praying harder.

But when another six months passed and it had not happened, Tammy went back to the hospital. This time; Richard accompanied her to hear what the doctor would say. Since then, she had been frequenting different hospitals for tests and treatments and some of the doctors insisted on seeing him too for examinations, yet, they were still without a child.

Lord, we are not living in sin and we are praying and serving you. We didn’t mess around before we got married. Our family members are also praying with us. Why have You not given us a child? Tell me what we need to do, Lord? Richard’s heart cried out.

When he stopped at a traffic light, he glanced briefly at his wife. He saw tears dripping down beneath her closed eyes as her head laid on the head rest. He knew it. He drew in a deep breath as he returned his gaze to the road and waited for the traffic light to change to green.

He remembered Ngozi’s statements about her mother-in-law’s opinion and cringed with anger. Perhaps, there are some other church members sharing the same negative opinion, who think our faith is not strong enough? How many other couples or even singles have left the church unnoticed because of such thoughts?

Why should the man and his mother say that about them? Richard thought again. Well, he would see the man on Saturday and teach him some lessons about life. But … come to think of it, did he have to see the man? Richard wondered. Did he need to bother to see a man who did not believe in his pastor and who was so narrow-minded as to believe that the pastors must be living in sin or that they were powerless or not praying enough just because one had one child and the other didn’t have any child yet?

Richard shook his head in disbelief. If the man’s mother could make children or knew how they could have children, why then had she not given them children before they joined the church? And even if he talked to the man, he might not necessarily return to the church as it seemed the mother had a strong control over him. Well, he would think more about the matter later, Richard decided.

He shook his head sadly again. This life! He used his right thumb nail to tap his two front teeth impatiently.

The light changed to green and he drove on, speeding. He soon caught up with the white car in front of him. He flicked on the signal light and overtook the car.

Tammy opened her eyes, pulled a Kleenex tissue from the box on the dashboard and wiped her face.

Richard looked at her briefly and back at the road. He replaced the right hand on the steering wheel with the left hand, and took Tammy’s hand with his free hand. He placed it on his thigh silently.

That act seemed to loosen her tongue. She cried, “God, why?” as she remembered the scene in her office the previous day.

Richard squeezed her hand gently.

She closed her eyes again as she thought about their situation. This was not what she expected. She continued to think of some people’s looks and comments about her childlessness.

Richard’s voice interrupted her thoughts as he sighed and called her full name, “Oluwatamilore?”

He usually called his wife ‘honey’ or ‘Tammy’, an abbreviation of the last eight letters of her name Tamilore. He called her full name Oluwatamilore, which meant God gave me a gift, when he wanted to win her over or plead with her.

He hadn’t called her full name in a long while, Tammy thought, but this was not the time to consider or ask why. She remained silent.

Richard looked at her briefly. There was no sign that she’d heard him. Her eyes remained closed, the tears still streaming. It was obvious she was not happy but would crying solve the problem? He sighed.

“You don’t need to cry.” He told her confidently.

That confidence again, Tammy thought. But it couldn’t give her what she wanted, a child.

“You know very well that what the woman said is not true. You shouldn’t be crying when you hear such talks.” Richard said.

The words he said seemed as if he was scolding her, which upset Tammy further. When talking to others, he used a voice that suggested he understood them but when talking to her he used a voice that said he expected her to know better. Shouldn’t she be concerned about their childlessness after almost seven years of marriage? And shouldn’t he be more understanding?

She maintained closed lips.

He continued, “They don’t matter. We both know they are wrong and that we will have kids someday. Delay is not necessarily denial.”

She didn’t respond still as she silently asked, ‘But when?’

“I understand how you feel.” He said.

How could he understand how she felt? She thought. He was a man, not a woman. How could he know how much people’s thoughtless comments hurt her? She was the one people usually pointed at, not him. It was her tummy they looked at for signs of pregnancy, not his. How could he understand the pain and the shame she experienced regularly?

(To be continued.)

In this novel, you will realise that God’s plans for you are good, and that there is hope for you.

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